Reading List

“If you don’t have the time to read, you don’t have the time or the tools to write.”

Stephen King may not be the world’s greatest literary genius, but he got it right with this comment. More than this, though, reading regularly is one of the best ways to improve your own vocabulary, knowledge, and understanding of the world you live in. For all the opinions that I hear voiced every day, it pains me that more of my conversations aren’t about books.

In that light, on this page I’ll maintain a list of books that I’m reading or have recently read. I welcome any and all comments on the books listed here, as well as suggestions of any other books or writers that you think I might enjoy. Highlighted titles indicate links to my own reviews on this site.

(Update: Sorry, comments closed due to excessive spam.)

Currently:

  • Flirting with French: How a Language Charmed Me, Seduced Me, and Nearly Broke My Heart, William Alexander
  • Ichi-F: A Worker’s Graphic Memoir of the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant, Kazuto Tatsuta
  • Horror Stories, Robert E. Howard

In 2017:

  1. Legion, William Peter Blatty
  2. The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person’s Guide to Writing in the 21st Century, Steven Pinker
  3. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, Stephen King
  4. Hex, Thomas Olde Heuvelt
  5. Little Heaven, Nick Cutter
  6. Child of God, Cormac McCarthy
  7. Bird Box, Josh Maleman
  8. A Head Full of Ghosts, Paul Tremblay
  9. The Fisherman, John Langan

In 2012:

  1. Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell
  2. Foundation, Isaac Asimov
  3. Foundation and Empire, Isaac Asimov
  4. Second Foundation, Isaac Asimov
  5. The Stars My Destination, Alfred Bester
  6. The Constant Gardener, John le Carré
  7. The Windup Girl, Paolo Bacigalupi

In 2011:

  1. Room, Emily Donoghue
  2. Freakonomics, Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner
  3. SuperFreakonomics, Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner
  4. Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury
  5. Dog Blood, David Moody
  6. Number9dream, David Mitchell
  7. Dune Messiah, Frank Herbert
  8. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, Stieg Larsson
  9. The Influencing Machine, Brooke Gladstone
  10. Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, Jules Verne
  11. A Fine Balance, Rohinton Mistry
  12. Super Sad True Love Story, Gary Shteyngart
  13. Consider Phlebas, Iain M. Banks
  14. Ghetto at the Center of the World, Gordon Mathews
  15. The Name of the Rose, Umberto Eco
  16. 11/22/63, Stephen King
  17. The Prague Cemetery, Umberto Eco

In 2010:

  1. Freedom™, Daniel Suarez
  2. Wetlands, Charlotte Roche
  3. The Angel’s Game, Carlos Ruiz Zafón
  4. Travels in the Scriptorium, Paul Auster
  5. The Unnamed, Joshua Ferris
  6. Q & A, Vikas Swarup
  7. Tell-All, Chuck Palahniuk
  8. The Passage, Justin Cronin
  9. Sleepless, Charlie Huston
  10. How I Became a Famous Novelist, Steve Hely
  11. Less Than Zero, Bret Easton Ellis
  12. Imperial Bedrooms, Bret Easton Ellis
  13. Kraken, China Miéville
  14. Lowboy, John Wray
  15. A Nail Through the Heart, Timothy Hallinan
  16. Bambi vs. Godzilla, David Mamet
  17. Dracula, Bram Stoker
  18. Frankenstein, Mary Shelley
  19. The Turn of the Screw, Henry James
  20. The Shining, Stephen King
  21. Freedom, Jonathan Franzen
  22. Night Shift, Stephen King
  23. Patient Zero, Jonathan Maberry
  24. Beatrice and Virgil, Yann Martel
  25. Zero History, William Gibson
  26. A Visit From the Goon Squad, Jennifer Egan
  27. Financial Lives of the Poets, Jess Walter

In 2009:

  1. The Terror, Dan Simmons
  2. Lush Life, Richard Price
  3. Snuff, Chuck Palahniuk
  4. Getting Things Done, David Allen
  5. The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald
  6. Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov
  7. Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell
  8. Sacred Games, Vikram Chandra
  9. Then We Came to the End, Joshua Ferris
  10. City of Tiny Lights, Patrick Neate
  11. Daemon, Daniel Suarez
  12. Shantaram, Gregory David Roberts
  13. Beat the Reaper, Josh Bazell
  14. The Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death, Charlie Huston
  15. Hater, David Moody
  16. Beloved, Toni Morrison
  17. Netherland, Joseph O’Neill
  18. Neuromancer, William Gibson
  19. Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell
  20. The Thing on the Doorstep and Other Weird Tales, H.P. Lovecraft
  21. The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkien
  22. Infected, Scott Sigler
  23. The Road, Cormac McCarthy
  24. Parasite Eve, Hideaki Sena
  25. Loop, Koji Suzuki
  26. Drood, Dan Simmons
  27. Never Let Me Go, Kazuo Ishiguro
  28. The Lost Symbol, Dan Brown
  29. Snow Crash, Neal Stephenson
  30. Winesburg, Ohio, Sherwood Andersen
  31. The Body, Hanef Kureishi
  32. Pygmy, Chuck Palahniuk
  33. The Year of the Flood, Margaret Atwood
  34. Under the Dome, Stephen King
  35. On Writing Well, William Zinsser
  36. Asterios Polyp, David Mazzucchelli

In 2008:

  1. The Zero, Jess Walter
  2. Omnivore, Piers Anthony
  3. The War of the Worlds, H. G. Wells
  4. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams
  5. Blood Meridian, Cormac McCarthy
  6. Best American Science and Nature Writing 2006, Brian Greene, ed.
  7. The Coming Plague, Laurie Garrett
  8. Moby-Dick, Herman Melville
  9. Microbe, Alan P. Zelicoff, M.D., and Michael Bellomo
  10. Moonraker, Ian Fleming
  11. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, J.K. Rowling
  12. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, J.K. Rowling
  13. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, J.K. Rowling
  14. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, J.K. Rowling
  15. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, J.K. Rowling
  16. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, J.K. Rowling
  17. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, J.K. Rowling
  18. A Study in Scarlet, Arthur Conan Doyle
  19. The Three Musketeers, Alexandre Dumas (Richard Pevear, transl.)
  20. Microcosm, Carl Zimmer
  21. Twenty Years After, Alexandre Dumas
  22. The Dumas Club (nee The Club Dumas), Arturo Perez-Reverte
  23. That Hideous Strength, C.S. Lewis
  24. A Year in the Merde, Stephen Clarke
  25. Anathem, Neal Stephenson
  26. Fun Home, Alison Bechdel
  27. Crime, Irvine Welsh

In 2007:

  1. World War Z, Max Brooks
  2. Next, Michael Crichton
  3. The Ruins, Scott Smith
  4. DC Comics Guide to Pencilling Comics, Klaus Janson
  5. Quicksilver, Neal Stephenson (SUCKED)
  6. Purity of Blood, Arturo Perez-Reverte
  7. Crazy Gary’s Mobile Disco, Gary Owen
  8. Waiting for Snow in Havana, Carlos Eire
  9. A Long Way Gone, Ishmael Beah (GREAT)
  10. On Writing Well, William Zinsser
  11. What Is the What, Dave Eggers
  12. The Abortionist’s Daughter, Elisabeth Hyde
  13. Carry Me Down, M.J. Hyland
  14. Gilead, Marilynne Robinson
  15. The Pleasure of Finding Things Out, Richard P. Feynman
  16. A Spot of Bother, Mark Haddon
  17. Parasite Rex, Carl Zimmer
  18. Rant: An Oral Biography of Buster Casey, Chuck Palahniuk
  19. Dune, Frank Herbert
  20. The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, Anne Fadiman
  21. If You Liked School, You’ll Love Work, Irvine Welsh
  22. The Yiddish Policemen’s Union, Michael Chabon
  23. Spook Country, William Gibson
  24. House of Sand and Fog, Andre Dubus III
  25. Ideas into Words, Elise Hancock

In 2006:

  1. Lunar Park, Bret Easton Ellis
  2. The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini
  3. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Hunter S. Thompson
  4. The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown
  5. The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana, Umberto Eco
  6. The Count of Monte Cristo, Alexandre Dumas (AWESOME)
  7. Thank You For Smoking, Christopher Buckley
  8. All Tomorrow’s Parties, William Gibson
  9. Cell, Stephen King
  10. Company, Max Barry
  11. The Jungle, Upton Sinclair (STRONG)
  12. Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt, Ann Rice (SO DULL)
  13. Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, Susanna Clarke (FUN)
  14. The Fortress of Solitude, Jonathan Lethem (PRETENTIOUS)
  15. The Harmony Silk Factory, Tash Aw
  16. We the Media, Dan Gillmor
  17. The Alienist, Caleb Carr
  18. JPod, Douglas Coupland (PRETTY OK!)
  19. Londonstani, Gautam Malkani
  20. Terrorist, John Updike
  21. Invisible Man, Ralph Ellison (POWERFUL)
  22. The World is Flat (2e), Thomas L. Friedman (OVERRATED)
  23. Nation of Rebels, Joseph Heath and Andrew Potter
  24. The Bedroom Secrets of the Master Chefs, Irvine Welsh
  25. Never Let Me Go, Kazuo Ishiguro (REALLY GOOD)
  26. Kiffe Kiffe Tomorrow, Faïza Guèna
  27. Adverbs, Daniel Handler
  28. The Martian Chronicles, Ray Bradbury
  29. The Road, Cormac McCarthy (AMAZING)
  30. The Futurist, James P. Othmer
  31. Making Comics, Scott McCloud
  32. The Keep, Jennifer Egan
  33. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Mark Haddon
  34. Captain Alatriste, Arturo Perez-Reverte
  35. The Town That Forgot How to Breathe, Kenneth J. Harvey
  36. Nick Adams Stories, Ernest Hemmingway